Rigathi Gachagua, MP for Mathira, has lost Sh200 million to the state. On Thursday, High Court Judge Esther Maina found that the politician, who is also the Kenya Kwanza Deputy President nominee, had failed to explain how he obtained the income from government institutions.
In 2020, the High Court froze Sh200 million belonging to Mr Gachagua pending the outcome of a case by a State agency seeking forfeiture of the funds to the government.
According to court documents, the funds are suspected to be the proceeds of crime because they were paid to companies affiliated with the politician and came from government entities.
According to preliminary investigations conducted by the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA), Mr Gachagua and Jenne Enterprises Limited were involved in a suspected complicated money laundering conspiracy.
Rafiki Micro Finance Bank’s funds are divided into three accounts, one of which has Sh165 million, another Sh35 million, and the third Sh773,228. All three are registered in the name of the MP.
“That within the said period, there were massive suspicious cash withdrawals, transfers, inter and intra-bank transfers from other accounts to the accounts under investigations and other bank accounts owned by Mr Gachagua in suspicious complex money-laundering schemes,” the agency said.
Jenne Enterprises has a fourth account with a balance of Sh1,138,142. According to court documents, the MP got Sh5.8 billion in seven years, including cash from enterprises or corporate entities that provide services to ministries, state agencies, and county governments.
“There are reasonable grounds to believe that the suspect’s bank accounts were used as a conduit for money laundering in efforts to conceal, disguise the nature, source, disposition and movement of illicit funds and should be preserved,” the agency submitted to court.
ADDITIONAL INPUT : NEWS AGENCIES